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Oceania/Australia : CTO STAMPS

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Horamakhet
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30 Jun 2020
11:06:03pm
Hi to all

Can't remember if I asked this question previously

I have been given quite a lot of blocks of Australian Stamps that are CTO
( cancelled to order)

I don't usually collect CTO, but as the they were given to me by a friend, I will keep them.

I would classify them as used stamps, and Stanley Gibbons does not even list CTO stamps.

What is the opinion of other philatelists.

One set is a nice block of 12 stamps of Australia Day 1985, both designs of the 30c values in Tete Beche mode as issued. Now they are priced higher in used condition, than in mint.
But are they truly used stamps.

Regards

Horamakhet
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Rob1956
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Member ACCC (Australian Commonwealth Collectors Club of NSW)
01 Jul 2020
07:40:05am
re: CTO STAMPS

Hi Horamakhet

Yes they are used stamps, though not commercially used. The 1965 collector's pack has CTO and Specimen sets, the CTO stamping was to prevent the collector from using the stamps for mailing.

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angore
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Collector, Moderator
01 Jul 2020
08:47:14am
re: CTO STAMPS

I will happily mount a CTO If no other stamp is available. Modern CTO stamps are quite common without much value but then most modern postally used stamps really do not have any more real value except maybe in a catalog or to people who only want postally used.

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Horamakhet
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01 Jul 2020
10:03:19am
re: CTO STAMPS

Hi to all

So technically if I soaked the gum of the stamps, them perhaps I could say they had been postally used and thus increase the value, but that being dishonest I would never do it.


However, I have heard of persons who have done this to increase the value.

Incidentally, the stamps are all from castlecraig in NSW and we all know where there may have originated.

Horamakhet.

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Tasnaki
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01 Jul 2020
04:45:48pm
re: CTO STAMPS

Horamakhet

Your stamps are not official CTO's with that postmark. The person you note uses them for proper postage, sometimes with a plastic cover (hence they may still have gum) to protect the stamps and has them cancelled at his local post office.

Tasnaki

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sheepshanks
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01 Jul 2020
05:02:33pm
re: CTO STAMPS

Just to add my two pennyworth, a used stamp in my book is one that has seen genuine postage through a postal system.
I do not consider stamps with preprinted cancellations as used stamps, they were mostly produced for income by countries supplying them to the philatelic trade for packet making. Most were probably not even sold at face value but at a considerable discount.
I'm not even sure that I would count a fdc from the major suppliers where they do not have an addressee as genuine used stamps. They may have gone through the mail but probably as a bulk lot in another envelope, not individually. (never seen one with a sharpie/biro marking)
Mostly I will not purchase items which appear to have been soaked from fdc's unless it is one I have been unable to acquire in any other way. I mark these and replace as I can with what I feel is a genuinely used copy.
I appreciate for many countries, especially Eastern European, it is the only way to complete sets as most were not on sale at the post offices.

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StampCollector
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01 Jul 2020
05:40:25pm

Approvals
re: CTO STAMPS

Quote:

"the CTO stamping was to prevent the collector from using the stamps for mailing."




and that's exactly what they are, useless stamps.
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musicman
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APS #213005
01 Jul 2020
08:16:32pm
re: CTO STAMPS

Quote:

"and that's exactly what they are, useless stamps."






I must respectfully - but strongly - disagree with that statement.

You are, of course, entitled to your opinion....but that's all it is -

an opinion.

One that many here do not hold to.


As I said - no disrespect intended. Happy

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StampCollector
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01 Jul 2020
09:15:48pm

Approvals
re: CTO STAMPS

that's ok, I also respect your opinion, but if we were to have a poll I believe that most collectors would rather have a postaly used stamps than a CTO.

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Horamakhet
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01 Jul 2020
09:27:21pm
re: CTO STAMPS

Hi Tasnaki

So then, although the stamps I was given, still have the original gum, technically they are postally used stamps?

Interesting thought

Horamakhet

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DaveSheridan
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01 Jul 2020
11:17:52pm
re: CTO STAMPS

The sender in question gets the stamps cancelled at the PO, and then inserts them in a plastic sleeve and attaches same to the package. A method designed to stop the PO from defacing the stamps with a marker pen. They are genuinely postally used. Soaking the gum off is entirely acceptable in this case.


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BrightonPete
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02 Jul 2020
11:26:51am
re: CTO STAMPS

I ordered a few things from Jay Smith in the US, and he used had canceled mint stamps in a bag as the way of paying the postage. Otherwise there wouldn't be enough room for all the stamps he had to use. They were properly cancelled and safely sealed in a bag. Great way to mail anything.

Initially I was confused by this method, but after seeing marker monkeys at it, it's a great method! That way you get a beautiful cancel, although most were not SON'd.

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musicman
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APS #213005
02 Jul 2020
07:39:54pm
re: CTO STAMPS

Quote:

"if we were to have a poll I believe that most collectors would rather have a postaly used stamps than a CTO."





And I would be in that group of those that prefer postally used.

Big Grin

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Horamakhet
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02 Jul 2020
10:15:58pm
re: CTO STAMPS

Hi to all

Thank you all for your input

In this case, from all the evidence, although CTO, they were used for postage, so in this case, I agree, they are postally used.

Philatiley never ceases to amaze me, the variable in collecting are like a blink in the eye of infinity


Regards

Horamakkhet

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cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
02 Jul 2020
10:36:42pm
re: CTO STAMPS

" .... "if we were to have a poll I believe that most collectors would rather have a postally used stamps than a CTO." ...."

I also set out years ago to collect only postally used, but eventually decided that for certain countries that had become virtually impossible. Since I enjoy the stamps for the visual aspect, the opportunity to learn about the customs, politics, history and in some cases morals of the peoples of the world, I have begun to allow Favor cancels and CTOs to fill spaces that are otherwise vacant. They are easily replaced when and if nicely cancelled postally used stamps surfaced.
So useless, nay, used less, yea.

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Harvey
03 Jul 2020
02:22:12pm
re: CTO STAMPS

With my Russia and Poland collections there is no way to stay away from CTO's and still have a collection. If good mint or postally used copies show up at reasonable prices I try to replace the CTO stamps. But I doubt if I'll ever get rid of a large percentage of them. My wife and I started collecting these countries in the early 1970's because they made a "pretty" collection. So if they were CTO's we didn't worry about it. Now I mainly concentrate on older stamps so there are no CTO's to worry about - same with Russia and Poland BOB. I also have a cutoff of 1985 which also helps.

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Kapul
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04 Jul 2020
09:17:49am
re: CTO STAMPS

The discussion regarding “Per Favour”” or “CTO” cancellations as against genuine postal cancellations has been going on for years with varying opinions being put forward as to what defines them and should they be keep.
Many years ago when I was living in Uganda I regularly wrote to my parents in Sydney Australia. My dad was a collector so I always purchased good stamps, pairs, blocks, complete sets etc. for placement on the envelopes of my letters. On handing them to the postal clerk in the Entebbe PO I would sometimes ask for them to be neatly cancelled. Did the fact that I had asked for them to be neatly cancel merit them being classed as “Cancelled to Order”? Even though they were to be genuinely used to transport my mail?
Dad kept a lot of the covers intact, some having a Sydney Circular Date Stamp of arrival on the reverse, others did not, and he also soaked some duplicated covers to obtain nicely cancelled stamps.
The crunch came when I decided to sell dad’s collection to a Sydney dealer (after dad passed on). The genuinely used addressed envelopes with a “socked on the nose cancellation” but without a Sydney back stamp were regarded as CTO, and not of much interest, likewise the nicely cancelled genuinely used pairs and blocks that dad had soaked off some envelopes were also regarded as CTO no gum.
The question is unless you know the provenance who can categorically say that a certain stamp or cover was CTO or not. Obviously if you had a cancelled unaddressed cover or a stamp or block of stamps beautifully cancel with full gum, one would have to assume CTO, but in the case of the above the dealer had no idea what he was talking about. All these covers, and the stamps thereon, had been genuinely used to transport my letters, but because the stamps were tied by great cancellations they were assumed to be CTO, Confusednot postally used.

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amsd
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Editor, Seal News; contributor, JuicyHeads
04 Jul 2020
10:12:53am
re: CTO STAMPS

first, this statement:

Quote:

"So then, although the stamps I was given, still have the original gum, technically they are postally used stamps?"



it is possible that stamps with gum WERE postally used, but that's usually not the case, and I think most of us would not value them as highly as if they were used in traditional manners.

CTOs are "used," or at least they are no longer unused. That includes both traditional CTOs, like Eastern European countries produced in great quantities, FDCs, handbacks, and the like.

That said, "used" in this way shouldn't be equated with postally used (a FDC that saw postal use is used).

As to talking about the virtues of CTOs, there are people who collect CTOs and they often have their own set of rules (original gum, NH, for instance). And many of us, myself included, accept CTOs for our collections.


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Horamakhet
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05 Jul 2020
01:48:09am
re: CTO STAMPS

Hi to all

Unfortunately Australia is also producing CTO stamps for collectors on request.

Once Australia produced nice issues yearly for postage, but now they seem to have the collector market in view, especially with their dropping revenue.

I hope it does not produce an "artificial collector, investor bubble" as it did in the 1970's

Technically, in my opinion, the stamps in the USA which were produced and sold with bar cancels for postage are CTO's, but some love to collect these stamps.

I try now to only collect MNH, but if friends give me CTO stamps or other stamps I will keep them, and if I don't need them for my collection, I give them to my children for their collections..

Regards

Horamakhet

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amsd
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Editor, Seal News; contributor, JuicyHeads
05 Jul 2020
08:41:33am
re: CTO STAMPS

HoroMakhet,

i suspect that your reference to bar cancels on US stamps are precancels?

I guess there is a relation between them and CTOs, in that both are considered used upon issuance, but with very different functions and initial pricing.

If something else, please let us know.

David

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cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
08 Jul 2020
01:50:20pm
re: CTO STAMPS

" .... but in the case of the above the dealer had
no idea what he was talking about. ...."

Huzzar !!!
There are many poorly informed dealers who seem to
have joined philately by parachute drop. I remember
old time dealers who seemed to know so much, but
were willing to learn. They usually had a back
shelf full of interesting books about all phases
of the hobby
In recent years at best they have a Scotts on hand.
And it also seems too hard for some to use the
google machine.
I noticed several info requests recently about a
stamp that has the actual letters of the country
inscribed on the front, usually center of the stamps.



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